What has changed since the initial shift?

It’s been a few decades since the initial oneness shift in my teens, so what has changed since then?

What I notice first is that everything inevitably has changed since everything is change.

Also, what was then is only here as an image. When I explore this question, I am comparing images of then with images of now.

That said…

The essence of what I notice and how I would talk about it is more or less the same. When I see some of my writings from then, the essence is much the same as now.

The words I use have changed some. Back then, I would talk more about God, Spirit, and so on, and these days I try to either not use a label or I more often call it consciousness. I try to focus on a more simple and universal essence.

Back then, it was all new to this human self, and my human self struggled to navigate and make sense of it. These days, it all feels more familiar and ordinary although the curiosity is still there.

Back then, I didn’t know anyone interested in this and I didn’t know much about how people talked about it or what could be found in the different traditions. Today, I know several who are swimming in it and I am a bit more familiar with the different terminologies and what’s in the different traditions.

Back then, I ironically had a stronger impulse to share although I couldn’t since I didn’t know anyone interested or who would understand. (At least, I didn’t know if I did.) These days, I know that the sharing is in good hands with others like Adyashanti, Douglas Harding, Byron Katie, and many more.

Back then, I didn’t know any practices to help clarify, help my human self to realign and transform, and so on. These days, I am familiar with quite a few. I have spent thousands of hours exploring various practices. (Although I am just scratching the surface, of course.)

For years within the initial shift, there were huge amounts of energy going through my system (even back then, I thought of it as high voltage going through regular housing wires), and a huge amount of almost constant insights. Most of what I write about here are those insights and from what life initially showed me then. The energies calmed down over the year, as did the constant insights. For the last 13 years or so, old trauma has surfaced instead, at first at the same level of intensity as the energies and insights following the initial shift.

Back then, I think some parts of me mixed up the essence of what it was about with some of the more peripheral things like states. Parts of me did try to hold onto some states because they felt amazing to this human self. These days, I am more focused on the essence. (Although parts of me still like some states more than others, of course.) States inevitably have come and gone and I seem to viscerally get the essence more clearly.

At that time, I really thought I would eventually write books, give workshops, and so on. I often spent hours a day for years both in practical exploration and also learning about how other people talked about it, and although I did it because I was passionate about it, that image about the future was also somewhere in the back of my mind. That doesn’t seem so likely to happen now.

And a few other areas of life:

At the time, I was just starting to explore music beyond what was familiar to me from radio, friends, and the local music store. Over the next few years, I found some of my favorite composers that are still my favorites (Arto Pärt, early music, and so on) and my general taste and orientation in music is generally the same as back then (slightly unusual music, international music, indigenous music).

I still favor and vote for the same political parties. (The Green Party or whatever is the most progressive and/or left.)

I am still passionate about sustainability and love Deep Ecology, systems theories, Taoism, and so on. (I didn’t find integral models until a few years later, although if I had at the time I would have loved that too.)

I have found more people like me so I feel less alone. (Although most of these are spread out around the world. I miss a local community of people with a similar orientation as me.)

I feel less that I am missing out on things and that I need something to feel more whole. (Some parts of me may still feel it, and it may come up in some situations, but it’s generally more peripheral.)

I guess I have matured in some ways as a human being. That too seems more or less inevitable. We have experiences that inform us and who we are.

In terms of healing, I really don’t know. I have done a lot of healing work of many different kinds, but don’t know what the result is. The water has been too turbulent over the last several years from a lot of old trauma surfacing. In that sense, it often feels like I have taken many steps backward although I know that’s likely not true. This is part of the process too.

The image is of me at Pullahari monastery in Nepal in my mid-twenties, reading When the Swans Came to the Lake. I studied Buddhism there for about half a year while I generally lived at the Zen center in Salt Lake City.


INITIAL DRAFT

WHAT HAS CHANGED SINCE THE INITIAL SHIFT?

It’s been a few decades since the initial oneness shift.

First, what has not changed since then?

Everything inevitably has changed since everything is change.

The essence of what I notice and how I would talk about it is the same.

The words I use have changed some. (Back then, I would talk more about God, Spirit, and so on, and these days I try to either not use a label or I more often call it consciousness.)

Back then, it was all new to this human self. My human self was very invested, because of the circumstances, to try to align with it and make sense of it. These days, it all feels more familiar and ordinary although the curiosity is still there.

Back then, I didn’t know anyone interested in this and I didn’t know much about how people talked about it or what could be found in the different traditions. Today, I know several who are swimming in it and I am a bit more familiar with the different terminologies and what’s in the different traditions.

Back then, I think some parts of me mixed up the essence of what it was about with some of the more peripheral things like states. Parts of me did try to hold onto some states because they felt amazing. These days, I am more focused on the essence and less on the states. (Although parts of me still like some states more than others, of course.)

And a few other areas of life:

My favorite composer is the same (Arvo Pärt) and my general taste in music is the same (international music, indigenous music).

I still favor and vote for the same political parties. (The Green Party or whatever is the most progressive and/or left.)

I am still passionate about sustainability and love Deep Ecology, systems theories, Taoism, and so on.

I have found more people like me so I feel less alone.

I feel less that I am missing out on things and that I need something to feel more whole. (Some parts of me may still feel it, and it may come up in some situations, but it’s generally more peripheral.)

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